If you’re currently sharing your Netflix password with friends, family members, and any random person that asks you because you’re a super kind person, be ready to pay the price. Moochers, this goes for you, too.
We’ve known for some time that Netflix was planning to quash password-sharing among users. The move was apparently prompted by their first quarter of subscriber losses earlier this year amid a landscape of powerhouse streaming service competitors gaining steam in the furious race to invent television all over again. Finally, we’re getting some clarity about what that plan looks like, and…it isn’t terrible?
According to The Verge, Netflix’s heavily-tested plan involves disincentivizing password sharing by giving users an option: lose the account or pay just a little bit more for “sub accounts.” This is a genius move because it gives password-sharers the ability to continue sharing those passwords and for those hidden subscribers to get away with a slightly discounted fee. The streamer has also created the ability to port your profile, meaning that you won’t lose your place in multiple Ryan Murphy shows once you shift accounts.
The other huge change coming November 3rd is, of course, the addition of a “Basic” tier that lets subscribers pay seven bucks a month for ad-supported streaming. We’re entering a new era of streaming, where the initial wave of innovation has led to a deflated regression to what used to work just fine for legacy television. The funniest thing is that, for everyone criticizing streaming services for charging us to watch ads, that’s exactly what cable subscriptions did for years. Nevertheless, this is still a huge gamble for Netflix as it becomes something it once helped kill. If Blockbuster helps launch thousands of real-life Blockbusters, we are truly living in a simulation.
(via The Verge)